TUBA CITY -- Two new construction projects at Tuba City District are continuing to make progress.
The first, a new $6.5 million dollar, two-story 17-room classroom is taking shape at Tuba City High School.
The first phase of internal demolition is taking place right now, with the second phase of external physical demolition set to take place the first week of July.
This new classrooms will take the place of a building that was constructed in the early '70s and had a major fire two years ago that caused much smoke and asbestos acoustic damage to both classrooms and administrative areas.
While the professional asbestos cleaning was undertaken, there was no certainty to how much internal damage the fire had done to the strength of the overall concrete roof deck.
Not wanting to take chances with the safety of their high school student population, both the TC Governing board and the current TC administration, under the direction of Superintendent Dr. Hector Tahu, decided that it would be better to hire a team of engineers to make a final determination and an engineering recommendation of total new construction.
When this occurred Tuba City District was able to apply for grant funds from the State Facilities Board for upgrading and repairing existing school facilities.
The grant application was a success, and TC District received the funding for the replacement of the building, due to action taken by former TCUSD Grant Writer Dr. Tanya Gorman-Keith, current Construction Manager Ron Begay and current Federal Projects Director for TCUSD, Roland Bennett.
The new 17-classroom building will have computer labs and administrative offices that will have state of the art technology equipment and additional rooms to accommodate vocational education areas.
On the other side of Tuba City, is the district's new Tuba City Junior High Cafeteria which is nearing completion and should be ready for operation sometime in late August.
According to Begay, the project is moving along and will be ready this year, ensuring junior high students will have their own cafeteria facility right next to their classrooms.
This past year, TC junior high students had to walk each day to either the Tuba City Primary cafeteria or the Eagle's Nest Intermediate School cafeteria to get a hot lunch.
Now, with their new $4.5 million state of the art kitchen, they will no longer have to share or walk to get their lunches.
The 17,000 square-feet cafeteria boasts a walk-in refrigerator and storage areas and will match the outside dZcor of the adjoining math and science building that was dedicated two years ago.
The new cafeteria will have room for more than 800 occupants and will also serve as a multi-purpose building for its junior high audience.
For more information about the two new TCUSD ongoing construction projects, call Ron Begay, TCUSD construction manager, at 928-283-1167 or 1166.
(Rosanda Suetopka Thayer is Public Relations Director for Tuba City Unified School District.)